A Native American warrior seeks revenge on the gang of sadistic scalphunters-turned-bank robbers who massacred his tribe.A Native American warrior seeks revenge on the gang of sadistic scalphunters-turned-bank robbers who massacred his tribe.A Native American warrior seeks revenge on the gang of sadistic scalphunters-turned-bank robbers who massacred his tribe.
- Chuck Holloway - Banjo Playeras Chuck Holloway - Banjo Player
- (as Antonio Imparato)
It's probably most famous for starring Burt Reynolds. He was hardly a name you would associate with this kind of thing but in this one he plays the titular anti-hero. He resembles a lot of other lead characters from spaghetti westerns who seemed to be loners with almost super-human combat skills; however, he differs in one significant way in that he is an Indian. It wasn't very common at all for Italian westerns to feature Native Americans in any capacity far less in a lead role. Reynolds actually even looks like an Indian as well. He is okay in the role otherwise though but nothing especially great, although his character is hardly the most well-written one ever. Seemingly Reynolds has dissed this film in public which seems somewhat harsh to me as it's a decent film and he did star in the Cannonball Run films after all but then again he has also bad mouthed another of his later films, Boogie Nights, a movie that is exceptionally good. So perhaps we shouldn't pay too much attention to Burt's taste in these matters.
Like lots of other films of this type, the story is revenge themed. Joe comes to the rescue of a small town terrorised by some bandits. The criminals have hitherto been used to killing Indians for a dollar a head but have now moved onto robbing a train for a much larger sum. Despite the townsfolk having anti-Indian sentiments, Joe helps them but at a cost and also because it is convenient with his plans for revenge on these bandits. Quite frankly, the story is pretty pedestrian. It has a fairly interesting underlying anti-racism message but mostly it's unremarkable. Neither Joe nor the villains are especially interesting. The best character for me was Estella, played by the beautiful Nicoletta Machiavelli but she is pretty peripheral. There is a lot of bloody action for sure but it isn't that memorable. The most striking moment – it you can forgive the pun – was when one of the bad guys gets a flying axe embedded in his head. Like a lot of similar productions, this one benefits from a score by Il Maestro himself, Ennio Morricone. In the final analysis, Navajo Joe is a fairly workman-like spaghetti western but will certainly offer something to fans of the sub-genre.
- Jan 15, 2014